A Year Of Experiences In Less Than Three Weeks…
I can’t believe it’s been less than 3 weeks in Chiang Mai now. I’ve done so much, seen so much and met so many new (awesome) people.
I remember when my life was exactly the same, every single day. Wake up, get a shower, make breakfast, get stuck in traffic on the way to work, talk to annoying customers for a few hours, have lunch with colleagues (highlight of the day!), write some reports, some more traffic, go home, make dinner, watch TV or play some video games, go to sleep, repeat…
Do that for three weeks and it will feel like time goes faster than the speed of light.
On the contrary, live in Chiang Mai for three weeks and it’ll feel like you’ve been there for a year… Just a sample of all the things I’ve done in the past three weeks:
- Visit temples
- CrossFit workouts (almost every day)
- Swim every day
- Climb two waterfalls in a day
- Climb mountain on a bicycle
- Go bowling every Monday
- Meet up and chat with like-minded people every day
- Have great coffee and breakfast every morning, while reading / writing
- Eat loads of different, amazing meals for less than $5 each (sometimes less than $2!)
- Learn to ride a motorbike and have loads of fun with it
I can go on for a while I think, but you get the picture… There’s a LOT of things to do here. And no shortage of time to do them, even though I still work now and then.
It’s just that I get to choose what to do and when to do it myself, completely on my own terms and it’s absolutely amazing to have that freedom.
Oh and did I mention I halved my cost of living compared to The Netherlands? Even though I don’t have to cook my own meals, do my own laundry, clean my apartment and have a 40-hours (who am I kidding? With traffic it was at least 50…) a week job to pay for it all!
Climbing waterfalls and making friends in Thailand… Here with Heidi and Gary, two fellow travelers I met in Chiang Mai at the Bua Thong waterfalls, which you can actually climb barefoot! (see the video below)
Climbing up the mountain, Doi Suthep, on a bicycle in pouring rain is quite a challenge, as is descending on wet roads, but it was an amazing experience, with Anna, another fellow traveler I met in Chiang Mai. I made a commitment to do it and loved it! Will be doing that more often for sure…
How do I have time for all of that? Well, not having a job certainly helps a lot, but it’s not the only reason. I stumbled upon an amazing book I started reading about 2 weeks ago: The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod.
In it, he describes how to become a morning person (no, there’s no such thing as being born as one), get up earlier than you’re used to every day and work on your personal development and goals in that time.
Specifically there are six activities you should do first thing, to get a good start. Hal calls these Life S.A.V.E.R.S. Which stands for: silence, affirmations, visualization, exercise, reading and scribing.
Some of these activities I was already doing (mostly exercise and reading), others were among those things I’d always wanted to do but never made time for (silence, affirmations, scribing).
For silence he recommends several activities you could do, I choose to mediate. It’s hard if you’ve never consistently done it and trained yourself to silence your mind. I keep having thoughts pop in all the time, it’s still super helpful though.
Affirmations are a powerful tool to set yourself up for success. Many people will think it’s a bit weird or doubt the effect it will have, but I am living proof that they work. Here’s why: about a year ago I wrote affirmations for the first time, here’s a sample (some are personal, so I won’t share them all here):
- I no longer have to worry about waking up to an alarm clock
- I am not accountable to anyone but myself
- Every day is a new adventure
- I am never bored, because I can do everything I want
- I travel the world a lot, living in a different place every few months
Yes, that’s exactly what my life is like now!
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